Thursday, 4 April 2013

Dad knew Gurney Slade

The Strange World of Gurney Slade was 1st broadcast on Saturday 22nd of October 1960 on ITV at 8.35pm. By episode number 3 it had been moved to the much later slot of 11.10pm.
I 1st became aware of The Strange World of Gurney Slade a couple of years ago and really could not believe how good this strange surreal odd and bizarre program was.
At the time (1960) there really was nothing on TV to compare this series with. Written by Anthony Newley (who also played Gurney Slade) Sid Green and Dick Hills, in the 1st episode we see a standard sitcom family set up, then after repeatedly being asked a question by the sitcom actors Newley gets up, walks through the 4th wall past the cameras  and out of the studio into the street. From here on we follow Gurney through all sorts of strange a surreal events. In episode 4 we see a court case unfold in which Newley/Gurney is accused of not being funny and having no sense of humor, and Gurney/the series is put on trial. This episode in particular does remind me very much of The Prisoner.
The theme for The Strange World of Gurney Slade was composed by Max Harris, the single version managed to reach number 10 in the charts and stayed there for 5 weeks. Most people will remember the music from Vision On when it was used in the clock sequence.
So what has all this got to do with my Father?????? when I was growing up everytime Anthony Newley appeared on TV or the Radio my Dad would inform us that he knew Anthony Newley, I was quite impressed that my Dad knew someone famous, I also wondered how and when he knew him. The answer was quite simple and not very exciting at all. My Father had served with Newley when he was called up to do his 2 years National Service. My Father also did a very bad impersonation of Newley as well. Obviously I have no idea what my Father thought of The Strange World of Gurney Slade, or if he ever saw it??? Dad knew Gurney Slade...........................Whoops!!!!! I should mention that all 6 episodes can be seen here.


  1. My father played cricket against Anthony Newley in the early sixties and someone broke Anthony's nose. I don't think Joan Collins was on the scene then. I'm going to watch this series this weekend I think.

  2. I presume his nose was broken with a cricket ball???? or did someone really not enjoy Gurney Slade.
    A good way to spend the wkend BC. Have a good one.